Cookies on this website

We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. If you click 'Accept all cookies' we'll assume that you are happy to receive all cookies and you won't see this message again. If you click 'Reject all non-essential cookies' only necessary cookies providing core functionality such as security, network management, and accessibility will be enabled. Click 'Find out more' for information on how to change your cookie settings.

We review research from our laboratory that attempts to pull apart the functional and neural mechanisms of visual search using converging, inter-disciplinary evidence from experimental studies with normal participants, neuropsychological studies with brain lesioned patients, functional brain imaging and computational modelling. The work suggests that search is determined by excitatory mechanisms that support the selection of target stimuli, and inhibitory mechanisms that suppress irrelevant distractors. These mechanisms operate through separable though overlapping neural circuits which can be functionally decomposed by imposing model-based analyses on brain imaging data. The chapter highlights the need for inter-disciplinary research for understanding complex cognitive processes at several levels.

Original publication




Journal article


Prog Brain Res

Publication Date





135 - 148


Attention, Brain, Brain Injuries, Brain Mapping, Computer Simulation, Diagnostic Imaging, Functional Laterality, Humans, Models, Neurological, Neural Inhibition, Reaction Time, Visual Perception